Saturday 27 March 1669

Up, and did a little business, Middleton and I, then; after drinking a little buttered ale, he and Huchinson and I took coach, and, exceeding merry in talk, to Dartford: Middleton finding stories of his own life at Barbadoes, and up and down at Venice, and elsewhere, that are mighty pretty, and worth hearing; and he is a strange good companion, and droll upon the road, more than ever I could have thought to have been in him. Here we dined and met Captain Allen of Rochester, who dined with us, and so went on his journey homeward, and we by and by took coach again and got home about six at night, it being all the morning as cold, snowy, windy, and rainy day, as any in the whole winter past, but pretty clear in the afternoon. I find all well, but my wife abroad with Jane, who was married yesterday, and I to the office busy, till by and by my wife comes home, and so home, and there hear how merry they were yesterday, and I glad at it, they being married, it seems, very handsomely, at Islington; and dined at the old house, and lay in our blue chamber, with much company, and wonderful merry. The Turner and Mary Batelier bridesmaids, and Talbot Pepys and W. Hewer bridesmen. Anon to supper and to bed, my head a little troubled with the muchness of the business I have upon me at present. So to bed.

9 Annotations

Teresa Forster   Link to this

Bridesmaids and bridesmen

We've kept the former but I had never heard of the latter, only the best man and ushers. A bit of research and I came up with the statement that bridesmaids were traditionally friends of the bride and bridesmen friends of the groom.

Will Norton   Link to this

Can somebody tell me more about buttered ale?

It does not sound very tempting!

Terry Foreman   Link to this

Bridesman

In contemporary western culture a bridesman is a male friend of the bride, one who walks down the aisle in the bridal ceremony in the traditional place of a bridesmaid.

The term however has an ancient and obscure origin. The term is first noted by the encyclopedia Judaica from the European Diaspora of the middle of the 13th century. In this context A bridesman was not a friend of the bride but of the groom. He paid for and arranged the wedding from his own money and would be repaid someday by the groom. It was a position of the highest level of honor in male friendship.... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bridesman

Groomsman

A groomsman is one of the male attendants to the groom in a wedding ceremony. The term usher is more common in the UK while the term 'groomsman' is more commonly used in America. Usually, the groom selects his closest friends and relatives to serve as groomsmen, and it is considered an honor to be selected. From his groomsmen, the groom usually chooses one to serve as best man. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Groomsman

Mary   Link to this

Buttered ale.

WN, if you go to the site Encyclopaedia and look under 'Alcoholic Drinks' you will find information.

Terry Foreman   Link to this

"they being married, it seems, very handsomely, at Islington; and dined at the old house, and lay in our blue chamber, with much company, and wonderful merry."

Did the "much company" attend the bedded Tom and Jane "in [the] blue chamber"?

Jenny   Link to this

I wish Sam had been at the wedding. I'd have loved an eyewitness account of everything that happened. It sounds like such fun!

Terry, I'm sure the much company attended the bedded Tom and Jane - that was all part of the festivities back then.

Chris Squire   Link to this

‘muchness, n.
1. Large size or bulk; bigness. Also: size, amount, magnitude (large or small). Now rare.
. . 2. Greatness in quantity, number, or degree.
. . 1669 S. Pepys Diary 27 Mar. (1976) IX. 500 To bed, my head a little troubled with the muchness of business I have upon me at present.’ [OED]

Andrew Hamilton   Link to this

"he [Middleton] is a strange good companion, and droll upon the road, more than ever I could have thought to have been in him."

Sam is a good listener if his companion has something to say. I enjoy his enjoyment of such moments.

Phil Gyford   Link to this

Mary and Will: I've corrected the link to buttered ale, which was previously only to the 'Ale' entry.

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